Qantas refreshes I Still Call Australia Home anthem

Kylie Minogue, Hugh Jackman, Adam Goodes frontline new advertising campaign

Brisbane Airport | Image by Kiku Ohe

More than 35 years after Qantas first launched an advertising campaign using the iconic Peter Allen anthem I Still Call Australia Home, the airline has unveiled a new version of the advertisement to showcase Australia as the world re-opens and travellers return to the skies.

The advert has a contemporary arrangement of the song and features the vocals of a new generation of the Australian Girls Choir together with National Boys Choir, the Gondwana Choir and some of Australia’s most loved personalities.

Along with Kylie Minogue, Ash Barty, Hugh Jackman and Troye Sivan, the campaign also stars children from Longreach, Qantas staff, Adam Goodes, members of Bangarra Dance Theatre, swimmers Bronte Campbell and Ellie Cole and Aboriginal Elder Rene Kulitja.

Kylie Minogue, behind the scenes image by Kiku Ohe

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The advert was filmed pre-COVID at locations around Australia, from the spectacular Hutt Lagoon in WA to the jagged cliffs of Cape Raoul in Tasmania. Scenes were also filmed in Melbourne, Uluru, Hobart, Brisbane, Sydney, South Australia’s salt lakes, Longreach, the Whitsundays, Los Angeles, Tokyo and London.

The final cut of the advertisement highlights emotional reunions with loved ones as more Australians are travelling domestically and international visitors are returning.

Air demand is on the up

Qantas said its domestic travel demand has strengthened significantly since February this year, with Qantas and Jetstar’s capacity for Easter expected to reach 110 per cent of pre-COVID levels. This compares with an average of 40% for the second half of last calendar year.

Internationally, bookings for destinations including Los Angeles, London and Hawaii are above pre-COVID levels and another boost is expected when New Zealand’s border opens to Australians from 12 April.

Qantas has added several new overseas routes in the past six months, including Perth-Rome and Melbourne-Delhi, with more to follow.

 

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Choir at Hutt Lagoon | Credit: Toby Burrows

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said now is the ideal time to unveil the new version of the much-loved theme and provide a boost to Australia’s tourism industry recovery.

“The last major Qantas advert came as the country was rolling up its sleeves to be vaccinated so we could all reconnect, and it really struck a chord. Now that borders are finally open, and staying open, this is the perfect time to relaunch this Peter Allen classic as the national carrier’s anthem,” Joyce said.

“The full version of this advert is effectively a short film that highlights Australia’s stunning natural beauty and unique culture while celebrating the incredible resilience that has really shone through recently.

“After a very difficult two years, we’re focused on recovery and have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline, including several new international destinations, decisions on new aircraft and recruiting more people,” Joyce added.

Former Australian of the Year and former AFL footballer Adam Goodes was filmed for the advert waist-deep in Bondi Beach’s Icebergs ocean baths in the middle of winter and said he was proud to be part of the campaign.

“I’m honoured to be involved in something that celebrates our unique country and culture and will hopefully help the recovery of tourism operators by inspiring travellers to get out and explore all Australia has to offer.”

Longreach | Credit: Toby Burrows

Qantas began using the iconic song in 1987 and an updated TVC was launched in August 1994 to coincide with the Commonwealth Games which were held in Canada. The Qantas Choir first featured in the advert in 1998.

The Red Roo has used various versions of the I Still Call Australia Home advert over the years, most recently in 2009, but this is the first time the airline has recreated the entire original TVC concept.

From this Sunday, the TVC will be screened in Australia on TV, billboards, print and digital sites at various times throughout 2022. The advertisement will be shown on all Qantas International flights arriving into Australia.

Qantas has also launched a “Thanks A Million” sale with over 1 million special sale fares across 70 domestic and international flights, to acknowledge Australians for their support over the past two years and to help the ongoing recovery of travel and tourism.

For the first time ever, Qantas Frequent Flyers will be able to choose double Qantas Points or double status credits on any eligible Qantas flight booking made before 1 April 2022.

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